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Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

10/21/2013 - 20:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

My mother’s favorite story: Two Jews in post-Anschluss Vienna are walking through an anti-Semitic neighborhood. They see that they are being followed by two Nazi thugs. One of the Jews says to his friend, “We’d better make a run for it; there are two of them, and we are all alone.”

10/20/2013 - 20:00 | | Opinion

We would like to thank Rabbi David Eliezrie for describing the new Pew Research Center survey of U.S. Jews as “a treasure house of information” on contemporary trends in Jewish life.

Unfortunately, however, Eliezrie’s Opinion column also mischaracterized the survey’s results, including some findings that actually support the points he was trying to make about Orthodox Judaism in America.

10/17/2013 - 20:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

The most recent Pew Study on American Jewish life reveals a treasure house of information about modern Jewish trends. The rising numbers of intermarriage amongst the non-Orthodox are a foreboding sign for the future vitality of American Jewish life.  It seems that when it comes to measuring the Orthodox Jewish community the study falls short.  Its methodology of denominational self-identification, effective decades ago when Jews fit in to neat categories of Orthodox Conservative and Reform, fails to reveal the real trends in a complex post denominational era. 

10/14/2013 - 20:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Listening to Ruth Calderon speak at my synagogue last week, I felt sad, once again, about something that has been lacking for a long time in the Jewish community in Israel and the United States: an easy familiarity with the texts of our tradition. The good news is that Calderon, a Knesset member, has made it a mission of her life to reacquaint Jews with those texts. Given her charm and erudition, she seems to be well on her way.

10/14/2013 - 20:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

As we prepare to mark the first anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, there is a near unanimous consensus among scientists that the world is getting hotter at an alarming pace and that human beings have had something to do with it. A just-released report by a select United Nations panel leaves little to speculation, stating, “It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.”

10/14/2013 - 20:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

The recently released study of the American Jewish community by the prestigious Pew Research Center points to some serious problems in the Conservative movement.  The survey reveals declining membership and the inability of the movement to retain its young people. As a rabbi who has been leading free, walk-in High Holy Day services for young Jews for the last 10 years, and as a Talmud professor at the Jewish Theological Seminary, I want to make some suggestions to keep the movement robust.